Fine for shipping company and skipper over collision – Fishupdate.com

Fine for shipping company and skipper over collision Published:  14 January, 2013

At a hearing today, January 14 2013, at Southampton Magistrates Court, a shipping company and the skipper of the fishing vessel Miranda were fined a total of £3,750 plus costs of £9,407 after pleading guilty to breaches of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972 and the Merchant Shipping (Safe Manning, hours of Work and Watchkeeping) Regulations 1997.

On the 10th June 2010, the UK-registered fishing vessel Miranda was returning from the fishing grounds off the Cleaver Bank in fog, to her usual port of Scheveningen when it was in collision with the UK registered fishing vessel Eventide. Neither vessel was fishing and the Miranda’s bow struck the port side of the Eventide forward of the port beam.

The Eventide sustained damage of sprung planks and damage to her rigging and mast. Her crew was working on deck at the time.

The beam trawler Miranda suffered minor damage to her steel hull and paint work.

The Miranda stood by the Eventide until she was escorted back to Grimsby by the RNLI Humber Lifeboat.

The Skipper of the Miranda, Mr Wezelman, and her crew did not hold the required Certificates of Equivalent Competency to work on a UK registered vessel at the time of the incident, in contravention of UK maritime legislation.

The owners of the Miranda, Jaczons of Scheveningen, Netherlands pleaded guilty to a breach of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972 and the Merchant Shipping (Safe Manning, Hours of Work and Watchkeeping Regulations) 1997. They were fined £2,550 plus their share of the costs – £6,271.

The Skipper of the Miranda, Mr Sijmen Wezelman also pleaded guilty to breaches of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972 and Section 52 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995. He was fined £1,200 plus his hare of the costs – £3136.

The District Judge said: “This case is one of human error and, while any collision at sea can have obvious serious consequences, in this case fortunately damage was only to the vessels. There has to be some reflection that in this case the defendants fell short of the expected standards.”

Mr David Fuller, the Principal Fishing Vessel Surveyor for the Eastern Region said: “The MCA is always concerned when the operators of any vessel are not maintaining a lookout whilst at sea – it is mandatory to keep a proper lookout at all times for seafarers on all vessels. This case also highlights the requirement for all UK fishing vessels to have crew with the correct UK certification.”